Tesla Motors Inc and Google are accelerating towards autonomous “self-driving” tech, but the two firms are traveling different roads. The worlds largest electric car maker is making Autopilot widely available, and is deploying the tech to drivers for beta testing, whereas the search giant is working to perfect its autopilot feature before making it available to the public.
Tesla, Google taking divergent paths for same destination
The public cannot use Google’s self-driving tech yet, and there is no information when the tech will be available to the public. Hence, there is no way to conclude whose technology is safer at this point – Tesla or Google.
As per a report by Michael McDonald, self-driving technology is rated on a one to five scale by application, where a five means that a person cannot functionally do anything to the vehicle while it is operating other than just sit in it, and a one means the feature essentially offer just simple parking assist technology.
Tesla Motors Inc ’s autopilot feature is rated a two, the report says. Tesla’s autopilot feature allow the driver to turn over control of the car on the highway, and a computer will keep up with the traffic and take over lane changes. Google’s tech, on the other hand, supersedes with a high rating of four or a five. People can put in an address, select navigation directions with a GPS, and the car will do the rest of the work.
Who is better?
Everyone has heard about the Model S crash by now. The crash, which took place on May 7, killed a driver who was using the autopilot feature to operate his Model S. Self-driving cars – like the normal cars – are not crash resistant. One can easily criticize the EV maker for not being very advanced, but the reality is, Tesla is working with the state-of-the-art computer systems. It is known that the Model S did lead to a crash and killed a human, but it is impossible to count how many lives it saved in the past by avoiding a crash.
The only alternative is to allow humans to make decisions instead of turning the driving over to a computer. But do crashes not occur when humans drive? Each year, hundreds of thousands of people are killed in car wrecks, and if the self-driving cars can make driving easier while simultaneously decreasing that figure, then it is a great technology.
Tesla Motors Inc is taking a less risky route by making small but significant change in the way a car is driven. While Google’s model make more sense in completely changing the way how we travel today, the report says. Both the automakers know about their approach, and only time can tell the system that would work better and which company would come on top.